It’s not always easy to know exactly what’s going on with your money. So here at Starling, we designed an app that makes things easier to understand. Take the homescreen for example: it shows you what you’ve spent that day (as soon as you’ve spent it), your overall balance (in real-time) as well as details of your overdraft, if you have one.

If you’re overdrawn, your balance will show as negative. We’ll also tell you how much of your overdraft has been used and how much you have left, so you’re never in the dark – and if you’re in credit, your balance will show, with the amount of your unused overdraft below it.

Bank balance on ATM screens and at the Post Office

In mid-December, new regulations are coming into effect, which will see all UK banks displaying your balance at ATMs and the Post Office in a slightly different way. This change will affect all our customers with a personal and/or joint GBP current account, and it’s all part of a drive to help consumers better understand how much money they have available to spend.

At the moment, for people using an arranged overdraft, ATMs and the balance enquiry service at the Post Office show available funds as any positive balance plus the amount left to spend in your overdraft.

That’s the bit that’s changing. From now on, these services will display your available balance without your overdraft, in the same way as it’s already displayed in the Starling app.

For example, if you have a £500 overdraft limit and you are £400 overdrawn, your available balance on the ATM screen or at the Post Office is shown as £100. Going forward, the way this balance is displayed will change.

Just to be clear, there won’t be any noticeable change to the way we display your balance in the Starling app – because we’ve been acting in accordance with most of the new rules before they were even introduced. The change will just be in the balance display at ATMs and at the Post Office.

UK regulation changes for bank balance displays

Continuing with the example above, if you have a £500 overdraft limit and you are £400 overdrawn, your available balance will be shown as -£400.

Example A Example B Example C
Overdraft Amount £500 £500 No overdraft
Account Balance -£400 £200 £300
Available balance displayed before the change £100 £700 £300
Available balance displayed after the change -£400 £200 £300

Fairer regulations around overdrafts

The change in regulation, initiated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), applies to all UK banks and their customers. The ban on the inclusion of overdrafts in available balance is being introduced to help customers gain a better understanding of the status of their account and to make it clear when the customer is using their overdraft facility.

The change for bank balance display is part of a wider FCA scheme that aims to make overdrafts fairer and clearer for customers. Upcoming changes for UK banks in 2020 include consistent prices for arranged and unarranged overdrafts and a ban on fixed daily or monthly charges for arranged overdrafts.

Changes to Starling’s overdraft notifications: affecting personal and joint GBP current accounts

At the moment, we send you a real-time notification if you go into an unarranged overdraft, so that you can top up your account.

From mid-December, there will be a small change to Starling notifications. We’re going to start sending notifications if you go into an arranged overdraft too. This, too, is in line with the new industry-wide FCA regulations.

As always, you’re in control. If you’d prefer not to receive these new arranged overdraft notifications, you can just turn them off.

All you’ll need to do is make sure you have the latest version of the Starling app. To check, go to the App Store or Google Play and search for Starling Bank. If your app is up to date, it will say ‘Open’ and if not, it will say ‘Update’. To change your notification settings, return to the Starling app and go to ‘Settings’, then ‘Notifications and Messaging’.

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